Photo: Lisa Han
What to Order: 7-to-11-Course Tasting Menu. This is dinner theater, plain and simple. In an austerely white dining space, Erik Anderson, a protégé of both Thomas Keller of The French Laundry and René Redzepi of Noma, delivers immaculate courses to diners at a U-shaped counter surrounding the open kitchen. With only 32 positions, the Catbird Seat is a hard table to snag (new spots open each day for reservations 30 days out). But for modernist cooking with real personality, there’s nothing like it. One particular amuse-bouche, called simply “Hot Chicken” in tribute to the city’s most recognized dish, showcases cayenne-scented fried chicken skins with dill salt and a puree of white Wonder Bread.
1711 Division Street, thecatbirdseatrestaurant.com